NIH Casts Critical Eye on How It Gives Grants

Nearly $15-billion for colleges is at stake in a review of the process for evaluating proposals

The National Institutes of Health's methods for reviewing and financing academic research proposals are often praised as the gold standard. Some American scientists, though, have recently offered less flattering descriptions, like "broken" and "arbitrary."

NIH officials have heard both arguments, and plenty in between, in recent months. They have begun their broadest-ever self-examination of how the agency chooses grant proposals for biomedical research. That is important for